Bristol Bears director of rugby Pat Lam has urged his side to bounce back from last weekend’s Gallagher Premiership semi-final defeat to Wasps by entering the history books with a win in France on Friday night.
The Bears travel to Aix-en-Provence to take on three-time Heineken Cup winners, RC Toulon, at Stade Maurice-David in the final of the European Challenge Cup.
Lam insists it is a huge opportunity for Bristol to make history by winning the club’s first major European silverware.
“This is massive for us; we’ve worked hard for this,” said Lam. “Right from the beginning, to have some tangible silverware would be the start of a process of trying to do this year in, year out.
“Obviously, we’re disappointed from the defeat to Wasps, missing an opportunity to get to a final, but to have this game after last week, is huge.
“In a final, when you play the game and that full-time whistle goes, there’s a real reward that you get handed over to you.
“It’s something that all rugby players, coaches and management look forward to, but there is enough of us who have experienced them to understand that there’s a lot of work that goes into it.
“So, this week has all been about taking our learnings from what happened last week and then channelling all of the excitement of a final into making sure we tick off a lot of boxes, and making sure we are ready to go and get the performance that will give us the best chance of winning that silverware.”
Main photo by JMP